Albrecht Durer's Bat
Chiroptera a.k.a. Bats- the only mammal blessed with flight. Bats constitute 1/5 of mammal species. There are over 1,000 types of bat, and they're found in every corner of the world. Five species even live in Alaska. They're not only prolific; they elimate insect pests, and they're important pollinators. Only a few bats drink blood, and it's more like sipping blood. The blood drinkers stick mostly to cattle, and reside in South America.
New York is home to some 9 or 10 species of bat. About 5 species take refuge in the city proper. It's a great environment. Lots of bugs to eat and dark, warm buildings in which to roost. Spotting bats in NYC.
Bats can be broken into two categories, Microchiroptera and Megachiroptera. Megachiroptera are generally larger, and feast on fruit. All bats in New York are Microchiroptera. They eat insects and use echolocation to navigate and forage. Echolocation begins with the animal emitting a sonic call. The call bounces off objects or prey, and the echo returns to the animal. This enables the bat to navigate in complete darkness. The strange bat faces below are carefully designed to aid in capturing echoes.
"Chiroptera" from Ernst Haeckel's Kunstformen der Natur, 1904
The secret is out. There is a sea change. Science is cool again. New Animals wants to unlock the secrets of the natural world. And New Animals loves a Jameson with ice. The Secret Science Club is the stone aimed squarely at these two birds. Here, young people gather to hear lectures and view demonstrations on sundry scientific topics. Union Hall, in Park Slope, Brooklyn, is a grand locale for these clandestine meetings. A big bar, books, and bocce. Que bella! Sign up early for the bocce courts. Secret meetings are in the basement. Where all secret meetings are held. New York Times Review of Secret Scientists
That's the motto of Kansas, the state I grew up in. Ad Astra per Aspera. It means 'to the stars through difficulties.' It's applicable to the state and applicable to this band - Drakkar Sauna. Just saw these Kansas natives a few weeks ago, and I can't stop listening to them. Somehow, they summarize the midwest for me. Rusty but harmonious, dark and funny, secular but spiritual, and relatable without getting hit over the head with pathos. They're a kick to see live. Stomping tamborine shoes, Rollie Fingers mustaches, and stories of "traveling the country, and having a fine time doing it!" Order the vinyl version of their record, Jabraham Lincoln, and the CDR version is also inside. And here's some live versions of songs gratis.
Albrecht Durer was a German artist who lived during the Renaissance. 1471-1528. Not only did he have the steady hand to make the craziest line drawings ever, he used his skills to revolution printmaking. The great grandpappy of graphic design. A lot of heart and dedication and dementia went into his religious prints, like in the Knight, Death, and Devil above. But few could capture animal life like Durer. Well before the photograph, Durer made animals breath on the page. Galileo would later follow suit and attempt a museum of the natural world in paper. But for now, more Durer animals to follow. Durer Bio from Met Museum